11.20.2012

Book Review: Patriots of Treason by David Thomas Roberts

by Pattie Cordova
I’m a huge fan of political thrillers, particularly those involving covert agents like Vince Flynn’s Mitch Rapp, David Baldacci’s “Oliver Stone”(a.k.a. John Carr), or Brad Thor’s Scot Harvath. Recently, I’ve become interested in stories about a broader spectrum of the political realm, like David Thomas Roberts' first novel Patriots of Treason.


About the Author
The authors life and beliefs set the stage for the book. Mr. Roberts is long-time Texan and admirer of the unique history of Texas, particularly the Alamo. He is active in politics and has been a speaker at Tea Party events. He is also the founder and CEO of Teligistics, a telecom expense management and consulting company. These facts about him strongly shape the storyline of his book, as he draws heavily on ideals of Texas, the Tea Party, and private industry.

About Patriots of Treason
For anyone new to the Tea Party movement, Wikipedia defines it as “an American political movement that advocates strict adherence to the United States Constitution, reducing U.S. government spending and taxes, and reduction of the U.S. national debt and federal budget deficit. The movement is generally considered to be partly conservative, partly libertarian, and partly populist.”

The story begins with a crisis in Iran, and incumbent liberal president Tyrell Johnson’s faltering attempts to gain the confidence of the American people before the upcoming election. Advisors are discussing strategies to bring up numbers in the polls. The flash point of the story occurs when the U.S. response to the issues in Iran is to order a strike. Shortly thereafter, an assassination attempt is made on Johnson. The perpetrator is said to be a Tea Party sympathizer, and the president and his cabinet put a spin on the findings to work to their advantage in eliminating this threat to the presidents’ re-election. In the process, they trample on human rights, violate federal and state statutes, issue unconstitutional orders, commit various atrocities and just generally run rampant with no regard to personal freedoms, sovereignty of the states, or responsible leadership. Members of the Tea Party are targeted, all the while trying to prove the conspiracy. The book culminates in a massive showdown that may redefine politics as the characters know it.

Thoughts on Patriots of Treason
After reading the book, it appears Mr. Roberts is not a supporter of Barack Obama. His story seems to be a thinly-veiled slam disguised as fiction, and while it doesn’t necessarily detract from the story, it does detract from the books future relevance. In addition, its aptly-timed release just prior to the Presidential election left me wondering if it was meant to influence the political landscape of the United States by casting a “minority” president in a negative light.

I enjoyed the story, but as a seasoned reader of similar novels, this book struck me as being over-descriptive in certain areas, which slowed the pace. I can be pretty wordy myself, but it’s not necessary to describe each and every detail of submarines, planes, aircraft carriers, etc., right down to how many gallons of fuel they use. In contrast, the characters could have been fleshed out more. Back stories, stronger personalities (with the exception of one very enjoyable Texas Ranger who needed no improvement), and a more realistic approach to the conflicts would invest readers more in the books main role-players. Other than that, the plotline was decently done (though in my opinion, a bit extremist), and although the prologue (and first three chapters) didn’t initially grab me, after reading halfway I was truly interested to find out the conclusion. The story was a bit far-fetched, but certainly not boring. For a first book, it was a good effort, a little rough around the edges, but with some fine-tuning to the writing style a sequel could be an excellent read. And Mr. Roberts, if you could throw in a secret agent next time, I’d be over the moon.

About Justine
Justine is a biological anthropologist, deal seeker, and stay-at-home parent to a rambunctious 4-year-old boy. She digs bones. And donuts. You can follow Justine for more frugal fun and other anthropology tidbits on Twitter: @JustineBurgess1.

This is not a sponsored post. I received a copy of the book to facilitate my review. All thoughts and opinions remain my own.